More boys, more blogs and one year at Hot Key Books

The very first photo. Look how fresh faced we look!

The very first photo. Look how fresh faced we look!

It’s a year ago this week that we had the idea to start this blog, to track our progress in the first year of Hot Key. To provide a written record of what we have done. Back then, I could not have imagined that a year later we would be so many diverse voices writing about subjects that have made me laugh, well up, find things out about people I never knew, and I hope in the most part, entertain our readers.

I have been overwhelmed by the passion expressed my many hot keyers, authors and guest posters who have written something for this blog, so I want to personally say thank you to all of you who have done so. Thank you for being so interesting! And to everyone that has read, shared, or commented on a blog post – thank you all so much too. When we imagined this blog, I never really thought people apart from a few of us would care enough to read it. So we are genuinely excited every time a comment comes in or we see a spike in our traffic.

There have been a few personal favourite blog posts for me over the year, the kind of blog posts that I will re-read occasionally (yes, sad I know) when we’ve had a busy week, day, etc to remind myself what a great team I work with. I wanted to highlight some of them briefly for you too, in case re-reading/reading is what you also fancy. So here goes, hope you can indulge in this short retrospective of almost a year on this blog:

Kate’s January post – 10 Things you never knew when started a publisher – really made me laugh, a lot.

Cait D – who knew you used to wanted to be a vet, until this post.

The Week of Woo – it had to be mentioned. Nerdfighters, we love you for helping John find a UK publisher, even though it wasn’t us.

Becca’s inspiring Matilda post , has lead to an office wide love of that musical (and Becca’s blog posts in general)

Meg and Jan’s series of blogs about graphic novels were some of our most read and discussed. And we loved the cartoon strip!

Amy Orringer, your – Awesome Doesn’t even Cover it – blog post, while interning for us, is widely considered a big reason we hired you.

Sara O’Connor – your print and digital post is something I’ve read many times. Partly for the Princess Bride reference, but mostly for your love of the written word, in whatever form we can publish it.

One Ring to find them,– was a genius title for a blog to launch our Hot Key Ring in May.

Oh, and I loved this drawing of our “substantial canapes” after our launch party.

I outed myself, and several others, as screen addicted and wondered if daydreaming is a lost art here.

Sarah O’s launch day post pretty much made us all cry.

Naomi blogged beautifully about print vs digital and sparked a great debate about how we all like to read.

We Stare Because We Care – oh, this was fun to do! And thanks mostly to Maureen for playing along.

And that brings us almost up to date, and tomorrow, we have a final blog treat for you coming up. Watch this space, as ever.

So, what about next year? We won’t be so new anymore, but that’s okay. Publishing in general is always an exercise in “new.” This year we were a new publisher, but next year we’ll be new books, new authors, new videos, new events, new reviews, new digital projects…etc. New should never go away, and that’s why it never gets tiring working in this industry – there is always something new, and wonderful waiting in someone’s submission pile.

One thing that won’t be new though, is that we will still be here, writing every day – I can assure you of that. But how about some new things I’d like to see next year?  MORE guest posts from our readers, writers, parents, booksellers, librarians, teachers, really anyone – please get in touch, we love hearing your views on here. And…the boys, the elusive Hot Key Boys, who we occasionally get on camera, but less often on the blog – we won’t leave you alone until we have hooked you in!

We’re nearly there then. One year is almost done, and it has been a blast. We are off to celebrate at our Christmas lunch, where we’ll probably concoct all sorts of other crazy videos and blog posts, and gush at each other in an embarrassing way.

I wish you all a lovely, restful Christmas – and we will see you all, on January 2nd for more new and fun things.

Merry Christmas,

Sarah B x


3 responses to “More boys, more blogs and one year at Hot Key Books

  1. Well done to you all at Hot Key Books for a successful first year. Yes, I love catching up on you all with the blogs, may they keep coming! Merry Christmas to you all.

  2. Happy Christmas, Hot Key! Have a lovely celebratory lunch! X

  3. Happy first year and a very merry Chirstmas to everyone at Hot Key 😀

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